This is the first installment of Hardwood Houdini’s newest series — the Boston Celtics Alumni Series Spotlight
The series begins with former Boston Celtics sharpshooting star, Ray Allen, and will follow a recap of his time with the Celts, his tenure in Miami, and what life was like for him after basketball.
On a Summer day in June of 2007, Beantown completed their “big three” with a draft-night trade for the Supersonics superstar, Ray Allen. They would send Delonte West, Wally Szczerbiak, and the number five pick in the draft, Jeff Green to land him. Additionally, the Cs would receive a second-round pick that would turn into Glen “Big Baby” Davis.
Allen would play the next five seasons with the Celtics, and in 358 games with Boston, the wing would average 16.7 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 2.7 assists. He shot 47% from the field overall, 41% on threes on a little over five attempts a game, and was one of the best free-throw shooters in the franchise’s history hitting about 91% of his shots from the stripe.
The peak of Allen’s time with the Boston Celtics came in a three-season span from 2008-2011. ALLEN was alternating between being the second option in the offense behind Paul Pierce to being the third behind Kevin Garnett as well. Over a nine-game stretch the sharpshooter averaged 18.9 ppg on 52.3% shooting and a career-best 57% from three.
Overall, Allen was instrumental in the 2008 Championship, 2010 finals run, and multiple other deep playoff runs in Boston.
Ray Allen leaves the Boston Celtics for Miami
In the 2012 offseason, Ray Allen would stun Boston Celtics ownership, his teammates, and many faithful fans with his decision to take less money to join up with LeBron James on the Miami Heat in a move to ring chase.
This felt like the ultimate betrayal because the Heat knocked the Celtics out in seven games in the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals just months prior. An offseason with a lack of communication led to Allen making a business decision viewed sourly by many as an ‘if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em’ chess move.
This led to a falling out with Ray Allen and his Boston ‘big three’ counterparts that included years without talking as bitterness festered.
In his short two-year stint in South Beach, he transformed his game into being an excellent role player in two finals runs which included a 2013 championship due in big part to his clutch shot in the Game six to keep the Heat alive.
His last season in basketball would come after the 2014 Finals. Many speculated he was working out to return at a later date to sign with the Golden State Warriors and become the Splash Father, but those fantasies never materialized.
After a long Hiatus from the sport, Ray Allen officially broke the silence by announcing his retirement on November 1st, 2016.
Life after Basketball for Ray Allen
In 2017, Allen published Memoir about his NBA career called, “From the Outside: My Journey Through Life and the Game I Love.” The Book touched on how he approached the game and even the reasons he eventually would leave the Boston Celtics.
There was some speculation of Ray stepping into a coaching role following his remarkable career, but he has largely focused on his relationship with his family and his role as Philanthropist. In 2018 to no surprise, he would be elected as a first-ballot Hall of Famer.
Allen has his own website called Ray34.com, where he advertises his Ray of Hope Foundation and other charitable ways he impacts the community. Here is a brief statement from the website that describes the goals of the Foundation.
“The Ray of Hope Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 1996 by Ray Allen. The mission of Ray of Hope is to assist with sports-related, community-based programs and provides avenues of opportunity through which our youth can “hope” to realize their full potential.
With the help of generous donors and sponsors, we have raised in excess of $500,000 which has allowed us to develop and implement programs as well as partner with charitable organizations in several parts of the country to fulfill the mission of assisting children in need. From Diabetes research, providing kids in low-income areas with safe and productive activities, to helping young students build greater self-esteem; the foundation is focused on continuing its positive work and becoming a constructive force in the lives of our young children.”
In total in his career, Ray Allen earned upwards of $184 Million dollars in salary alone. He currently resides in Coral Gables, Florida raising his four children and is happily married to his actress wife, Shannon Walker.
Making amends with the Boston Celtics
During Kevin Garnett’s retirement ceremony in March of 2022, the big three reunited and put to rest any petty drama. The three embraced to much delight from Celtics fans everywhere. KG was happy to see Ray there in attendance and even said, “Your next, boy!”.
This is highly unlikely as Allen only logged five seasons with the club and the Boston Celtics have already moved his No. 20 around a handful of times to different players since his departure. The best bet would be for the Miami Heat to eventually retire his number for the big shot he hit in the legendary 2013 Finals run. It must stink to have the same jersey number as Giannis in the Bucks franchise.
Who would you like us to spotlight next, comment below.